Goodbye to a River

Goodbye to a River

4.6 3
by John Graves
     
 

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In the 1950s, a series of dams was proposed along the Brazos River in north-central Texas. For John Graves, this project meant that if the stream’s regimen was thus changed, the beautiful and sometimes brutal surrounding countryside would also change, as would the lives of the people whose rugged ancestors had eked out an existence there. Graves therefore…  See more details below

Overview

In the 1950s, a series of dams was proposed along the Brazos River in north-central Texas. For John Graves, this project meant that if the stream’s regimen was thus changed, the beautiful and sometimes brutal surrounding countryside would also change, as would the lives of the people whose rugged ancestors had eked out an existence there. Graves therefore decided to visit that stretch of the river, which he had known intimately as a youth.

Goodbye to a River is his account of that farewell canoe voyage. As he braves rapids and fatigue and the fickle autumn weather, he muses upon old blood feuds of the region and violent skirmishes with native tribes, and retells wild stories of courage and cowardice and deceit that shaped both the river’s people and the land during frontier times and later. Nearly half a century after its initial publication, Goodbye to a River is a true American classic, a vivid narrative about an exciting journey and a powerful tribute to a vanishing way of life and its ever-changing natural environment.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“John Graves’s writing is invaluable. . . . The reader who misses Graves will have missed much.” —Larry McMurtry

“As you read, you have the feeling that the whole colorful, brutal tapestry of the Lone Star State is being unrolled for you out of the biography of this one stream.” —The Atlantic Monthly

“Graves’ originality and flair turn this local scene and regional lore into an hoest and powerfully evocative picture of frontier life anywhere.” —The Chicago Sunday Tribune

“One of the most pleasing books I’ve ever read. I love the way it weaves together remote history, not so remote history, present events, and landscape.”—Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, author of The Hidden Life of Dogs

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307773357
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/10/2010
Series:
Vintage Departures
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
367,652
File size:
3 MB

Read an Excerpt

In the 1950s, a series of dams was proposed along the Brazos River in north-central Texas. For John Graves, this project meant that if the stream’s regimen was thus changed, the beautiful and sometimes brutal surrounding countryside would also change, as would the lives of the people whose rugged ancestors had eked out an existence there. Graves therefore decided to visit that stretch of the river, which he had known intimately as a youth.

Goodbye to a River is his account of that farewell canoe voyage. As he braves rapids and fatigue and the fickle autumn weather, he muses upon old blood feuds of the region and violent skirmishes with native tribes, and retells wild stories of courage and cowardice and deceit that shaped both the river’s people and the land during frontier times and later. Nearly half a century after its initial publication, Goodbye to a River is a true American classic, a vivid narrative about an exciting journey and a powerful tribute to a vanishing way of life and its ever-changing natural environment.

Meet the Author

John Graves was born in Texas and educated at Rice and Columbia universities. He has published a number of books, chiefly nonfiction concerned with his home region. He currently lives with his wife on some four hundred acres of rough Texas hill country, which he described in Hard Scrabble.

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Goodbye to a River 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
TexanaTours More than 1 year ago
I have quite an extensive Texas book collection. I have never read this one but have seen it referenced in many Texas books. I have now read it and everyone was right. This is must read for anyone interested in Texas. Graves mixes the taste and feel of Texas and the Brazos with all the Texas history that happened on the river. His descriptions and analysis of "The People" are second to none.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago